Acting City Manager Ralph J. Dunphy last night submitted a record 1968 budget of $32.9 million--nearly $2.5 million more than last year--to the City Council.
The School Department's share of the budget took the biggest leap--$1.5 million--principally to pay for salary increases. Last year's pay raise for police and firemen (not fully included in the 1967 budget) accounted for $1.2 million of the increase. Another $700,000 of the increase will pay for salary increases for nurses and the higher operating expenses of the new City Hospital.
Since the state will take-over welfare obligations this July, the Welfare Department's budget went down by some $1.5 million.
The council sent the budget to the finance committee virtually without comment. The committee's chairman, Alfred E. Vellucci, promised "speedy meetings on this City budget" to get "a quick tax rate." Councillor Daniel J. Hayes Jr. asked Vellucci if he was predicting that the rate would go down. Vellucci replied "I'm praying to God."
The City won't know its exact financial position--and this year's tax rate--for several months. It must first receive the so-called "cherry sheet" which details the City's anticipated revenues from and obligations to the state and agencies such as the MBTA. bert E. Rudolph told the council that
In other action, the Council heard that the much-damned rotary around the Cambridge Common may be on its way out.
In a 15-minute appearance (his shortest in months), Traffic Director Rohe hopes to end the rotary by March 31. If Rudolph goes through with his plan, Garden St., Waterouse St., and Mass. Ave., along the Common will once again be two way streeths.
The council has long opposed the rotary, which Rudolph began last summer as a "temporary" measure to aid construction of the Cambridge St. underpass. Construction of the underpass was far enough along several months ago to allow ending the rotary, but it remained, due to a mix-up with the MBTA.
MBTA officials claimed that Rudolph told them the rotary would be permanent; they made some $10,000 worth of wiring changes in the area and were reluctant to spend the additional money necessary to go back to the old two-way pattern. They have now agreed to do so.